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The question of where to raise an action for divorce

Location, Location, Location
England and Wales, and particularly London, have this week been christened the divorce capital of the world. This follows the publication of a study carried out by the London law firm Withers LLP into the level and nature of spousal maintenance payments which have been awarded in various European countries, as well as the United States, South Africa and New Zealand. This study has found that the number of factors which judges south of the border are entitled to take into account when making such an award tend to result in a more generous level of maintenance being awarded for a longer period than in comparable jurisdictions. 
Following on from notable awards and settlements in divorce cases involving wealthy business tycoons and Russian oligarchs in the past few years, it is easy to see why England is fast becoming seen as the forum of choice for spouses seeking a significant award from their former husband or wife. 
However, neither the study itself nor the various headlines which have followed on from its publication take into account the wide variety of issues which can require resolution when a party reaches the stage of raising divorce proceedings. For example, there is no mention of how the English courts approach the highly important and frequently fraught issue of what arrangements are to be made for the children of the marriage and nor is there any consideration of the potential benefits of parties achieving a clean break from each other in a financial as well as emotional sense. 
England may well be the most suitable jurisdiction for a number of people to raise a divorce action in the event that such a step becomes necessary. However there is simply no guarantee that this is a rule of thumb which can be used by everyone. The best course of action for anyone who is considering raising divorce proceedings, and who has a choice of jurisdictions in which those proceedings could be raised, is to take legal advice from a qualified solicitor in all of those locations so that they can find out what the outcome is likely to be if an action is raised there. This will allow that party to make a fully-informed decision on what jurisdiction will best suit all of the issues and circumstances of their particular case.

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